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Ieyasu, indeed, seems to
have kept three objects steadfastly in view, namely, the development
of oversea trade, the acquisition of a mercantile marine, and the
prosecution of mining enterprise. To the Spaniards, to the
Portuguese, to the English, and to the Dutch, he offered a site for a
settlement in a suburb of Yedo, and had the offer been accepted,
Japan might never have been closed to foreign intercourse. At that
time the policy of the empire was free trade. There were no customs
dues, though it was expected that the foreign merchants would make
liberal presents to the feudatory into whose port they carried their
wares. The Tokugawa baron gave plain evidence that he regarded
commerce with the outer world as a source of wealth, and that he
wished to attract it to his own domains. On more than one occasion he
sent an envoy to Manila to urge the opening of trade with the regions
in the vicinity of Yedo, and to ask the Spaniards for expert naval
architects. His attitude is well shown by a law enacted in 1602:

"If any foreign vessel by stress of weather is obliged to touch at
any principality or to put into any harbour of Japan, we order that,
whoever these foreigners may be, absolutely nothing whatever that
belongs to them, or that they may have brought in their ship, shall
be taken from them. Likewise, we rigorously prohibit the use of any
violence in the purchase or sale of any of the commodities brought by
their ship, and if it is not convenient for the merchants of the ship
to remain in the port they have entered, they may pass to any other
port that may suit them, and therein buy and sell in full freedom.
Likewise, we order, in a general manner, that foreigners may freely
reside in any part of Japan they choose, but we rigorously forbid
them to propagate their faith."

In the year 1605, the Tokugawa chief granted a permit to the Dutch
for trade in Japan, his expectation being that the ships which they
undertook to send every year would make Uraga, or some other place
near Yedo, their port of entry. In this he was disappointed. The
first Hollanders that set foot in Japan were eighteen survivors of
the crew of the wrecked Liefde. These men were at first placed in
confinement, and during their detention they were approached by
emissaries from the feudatory of Hirado, who engaged some of them to
instruct his vassals in the art of gun casting and the science of
artillery, and who also made such tempting promises with regard to
Hirado that the Dutch decided to choose that place for headquarters,
although it was then, and always subsequently remained, an
insignificant little fishing village. The Dutch possessed one great
advantage over their rivals from Manila and Macao: they were prepared
to carry on commerce while eschewing religious propagandism. It was
this element of the situation that the Hirado feudatory shrewdly
appreciated when he enticed the Dutchmen to make Hirado their port of
entry.

With regard to the desire of Ieyasu to exploit the mining resources
of his country, the fact is demonstrated by an incident which
occurred at the time. The governor--general of the Philippines
(Rodrigo Yivero y Velasco), whose ship had been cast away on the
coast of Japan while en route for Acapulco, had an interview with
Ieyasu, and in response to the latter's application for fifty mining
experts, the Spaniards made a proposal, to the terms of which,
onerous as they were, Ieyasu agreed; namely that one half of the
produce, of the mines should go to the miners; that the other half
should be divided equally between Ieyasu and the King of Spain; that
the latter might send officials to Japan to protect his mining
interests, and that these officials might be accompanied by priests,
who would have the right to erect public churches, and to hold
religious services there.* These things happened in 1609. Previous to
that time, the Tokugawa chief had repeatedly imposed a strict veto on
Christian propagandism; yet we now find him removing that veto
partially, for the sake of obtaining foreign expert assistance. Like
Hideyoshi, Ieyasu had full confidence in himself and in his
countrymen. He did not doubt his ability to deal with emergencies if
they arose, and he made no sacrifice to timidity. But his courageous
policy died with him, and the miners never came. Moreover, the
Spaniards seemed incapable of any successful effort to establish
trade with Japan. Fitful visits were paid by their vessels at Uraga,
but the Portuguese continued to monopolize the commerce.

*It is to be understood, of course, that these ministrations were
intended to be limited to Spaniards resident in Japan.

ENGRAVING: OLD SPANISH CLOCK PRESERVED IN KUNOZAN.

That commerce, however, was not without rude interruptions. One,
especially memorable, occurred at the very time when Rodrigo's vessel
was cast away. "In a quarrel at Macao some Japanese sailors lost
their lives, and their comrades were compelled by the commandant,
Pessoa, to sign a declaration exonerating the Portuguese. The
signatories, however, told a different tale when they returned to
Japan, and their feudal chief, the daimyo of Arima, was much
incensed, as also was Ieyasu In the following year (1609), this same
Pessoa arrived at Nagasaki in command of the Madre de Dios, carrying
twelve Jesuits and a cargo worth a million crowns. Ieyasu ordered the
Arima feudatory to seize her. Surrounded by an attacking force of
twelve hundred men in boats, Pessoa fought his ship for three days,
and then, exploding her magazine, sent her to the bottom with her
crew, her passenger-priests, and her cargo."

Fifty-eight years before the date of this occurrence, Xavier had
conveyed to Charles V a warning that if ships from New Spain
"attempted to conquer the Japanese by force of arms, they would have
to do with a people no less covetous than warlike, who seem likely to
capture any hostile fleet, however strong." It was a just
appreciation. The Portuguese naturally sought to obtain satisfaction
for the fate of Pessoa, but Ieyasu would not even reply to their
demands, though he made no attempt to prevent the resumption of trade
with Macao.

OPENING OF ENGLISH AND DUTCH TRADE

In the year 1609, Ieyasu had reason to expect that the Spaniards and
the Dutch would both open trade with Japan. His expectation was
disappointed in the case of the Spaniards, but, two years later, the
Dutch flag was seen in Japanese waters. It was flown by the Brack, a
merchantman which, sailing from Patani, reached Hirado with a cargo
of pepper, cloth, ivory, silk, and lead. Two envoys were on board the
vessel, and her arrival in Japan nearly synchronized with the coming
of the Spanish embassy from Manila, which had been despatched
expressly for the purpose of "settling the matter regarding the
Hollanders." Nevertheless, the Dutch obtained a liberal patent from
Ieyasu.

Twelve years previously, the merchants of London, stimulated by a
spirit of rivalry with the Dutch, had organized the East India
Company, which at once began to send ships eastward. As soon as news
came that the Dutch were about to establish a trading station in
Japan, the East India Company issued orders that the Clove, commanded
by Saris, should proceed to the Far Eastern islands. The Clove
reached Hirado on the 11th of June, 1613. Her master, Saris, soon
proved that he did not possess the capacity essential to success. He
was self-opinionated, suspicious, and of shallow judgment. Though
strongly urged by Will Adams to make Uraga the seat of the new trade;
though convinced of the excellence of the harbour there, and though
instructed as to the great advantage of proximity to the shogun's
capital, he appears to have harboured some distrust of Adams, for he
finally selected Hirado in preference to Uraga, "which was much as
though a German going to England to open trade should prefer to
establish himself at Dover or Folkestone rather than in the vicinity
of London." Nevertheless he received from Ieyasu a charter so liberal
that it plainly displayed the mood of the Tokugawa shogun towards
foreign trade:

"(1) The ship that has now come for the first time from England over
the sea to Japan may carry on trade of all kinds without hindrance.
With regard to future visits (of English ships), permission will be
given in regard to all matters.

"(2) With regard to the cargoes of ships, requisition will be made by
list according to the requirements of the shogunate.

"(3) English ships are free to visit any port in Japan. If disabled
by storms they may put into any harbour.

"(4) Ground in Yedo in the place which they may desire shall be given
to the English, and they may erect houses and reside and trade there.
They shall be at liberty to return to their country whenever they
wish to do so, and to dispose as they like of the houses they have
erected.

"(5) If an Englishman dies in Japan of disease or any other cause,
his effects shall be handed over without fail.

"(6) Forced sales of cargo and violence shall not take place.

"(7) If one of the English should commit an offence, he should be
sentenced by the English general according to the gravity of his
offence."*

*In this article, Ieyasu recognizes the principle of
extra-territorial jurisdiction.

The terms of the above show that Saris was expected to make Yedo his
headquarters. Had he done so he would have been practically free from
competition; would have had the eastern capital of the empire for
market, and would have avoided many expenses and inconveniences
connected with residence elsewhere. But he did not rise to the
occasion, and the result of his mistaken choice as well as of bad
management was that, ten years later (1623), the English factory at
Hirado had to be closed, the losses incurred there having aggregated
2000--$10,000. It has to be noted that, a few months after the death
of Ieyasu, the above charter underwent a radical modification. The
original document threw open to the English every port in Japan; the
revised document limited them to Hirado. But this restriction may be
indirectly traced to the blunder of not accepting a settlement in
Yedo and a port at Uraga.



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